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Working while disabled [Jul. 10th, 2012|04:12 pm]
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[starrynight]
Hello all! I'm new to the community. I'm nearly thirty and lately, I've been thinking of going back to work on a very part time basis. I have Bipolar I, arthritis brought on by hypermobility, severe hypertension brought on by excess adrenaline (which also means I get hot and sweaty very easily), and chronic fatigue.

I left the work force some years ago but I've only started to realize that SSDI isn't cutting it. While I am grateful for the income I do get, it's not enough. Call me crazy, but I miss working and earning my own money. Sitting at home all day is BORING.

Ideally, I'd like to work something like 10 hours a week.

Any advice for someone who is trying to get back into the workforce? Also, what kind of accomodations would you make? I was thinking something like a stool if I end up cashiering, and easy access to water and ice (if applicable).
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Comments:
[User Picture]From: sammason
2012-07-10 08:31 pm (UTC)

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What kinds of work would you seek?
[User Picture]From: starrynight
2012-07-10 08:37 pm (UTC)

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Office and/or retail jobs. I don't have a degree in anything, I didn't make it through college. It wasn't for lack of trying, I had a 4.0 GPA for two years. I just couldn't handle it with all my health problems. But, I have 10 years experience working in an office and about 7 in retail.
[User Picture]From: ma_ee_uh
2012-07-10 09:13 pm (UTC)

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What about an office environment with good air conditioning where you could sit and drink water? Answering phones or greeting clients, perhaps? 10 hours a week might be difficult to find, but it could be doable especially if you look for weekend jobs, i.e. working Sat & Sun mornings ... or some places sometimes need part-time evenings.

If you feel you've been out of the work force too long to be "employable," perhaps consider doing a 6-month stint of volunteering in the type of environment you'd like to do paid work, and then start looking for paid employment (though sometimes unpaid things can leads to paid ones).

Good luck!
[User Picture]From: starrynight
2012-07-10 09:33 pm (UTC)

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Yes, that would be wonderful. So far, I've only been able to find retail jobs that are flexible. But I'm going to keep trying because you never know.

I've been thinking of volunteering. I'll have to look and see what I can find.

Edited at 2012-07-10 09:34 pm (UTC)
[User Picture]From: ma_ee_uh
2012-07-10 09:41 pm (UTC)

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Where do you live?
[User Picture]From: starrynight
2012-07-10 10:05 pm (UTC)

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I live on Long Island, New York, in Nassau County.
[User Picture]From: ma_ee_uh
2012-07-11 12:13 am (UTC)

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Is commuting to Manhattan or Brooklyn a possibility? If so, lots of options! If not, I bet there is a ton of part-time work on L.I. -- I suggest looking on craigslist. :)
[User Picture]From: starrynight
2012-07-11 12:16 am (UTC)

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I don't go into the city this time of year because the tunnels are too hot for me that I nearly pass out. Otherwise, maybe.

There's hardly anything on Craigslist. I've been using Snagajob for the last two weeks. More postings and I can break it down by zip code :)
[User Picture]From: photoash
2012-07-10 10:25 pm (UTC)

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I second the volunteering idea. That would be a very low stress way to see what you may feel up to doing and what you'd enjoy.

Then if it didn't work out at one type of position you could leave and not feel guilty or have it look bad on a resume :) and find another volunteer gig!
[User Picture]From: starrynight
2012-07-10 11:16 pm (UTC)

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That's totally true :)
[User Picture]From: zandperl
2012-07-11 01:05 am (UTC)

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Also consider taking a course at a community college (aka junior college) and working part-time at the school. CCs tend to have better support for people with disabilities than do 4-year schools, and once you are a student it's easy to get a 10-hr/week job. Examples of college student jobs that could fit what you're looking for: bookstore cashier, cafeteria/cafe cashier, library checkout, administrative assistant, receptionist, peer tutor.